Have you ever walked around your fabric department and a fabric spoke to you? That is what happened to me with this quilt project. I wanted to make a quilt for my mom but my inspiration mojo was at a low point. I wanted something feminine for a ladies bedroom but I didn't feel like a whole lot of piecing. So I let the fabric "speak to me". As soon as I saw the bee print, my plan began formulating.
Isn't this so pretty? It just looks inviting. I could imagine my mom snuggled underneath. I went in search of other fabric that would be a good match.
Now quilt math and calculating fabric are a another story for me. I freely admit that I am no expert and if a math problem has more than two parts, I am at a loss. Quilt math reminds me of word problems. Yuck. There is light at the end of the tunnel though in the form of a wonderful website. Quilters Paradise. They have several FREE calculators that will take away the math pressure and allow you to just be creative.
I decided to treat the bee fabric as a panel and then sew increasing borders around it. The border calculator allows you to enter the measurements of the center part of your quilt top and then add up to five borders. It will tell you how much yardage to purchase.
They have a batting and backing calculator and a binding calculator also. I like to use these before I make my shopping trip so I am prepared to purchase. Really the fabric is enough stimulation in the store. I don't need to add math in the mix. Check out the Quilter Paradise story and their retail store. They have such an interesting background.
I wanted to incorporate some embroidery on the quilt top so I digitized the bee logo from the fabric and added quilting as an applique.
Here is that central focus fabric with the embroidery and two of the three borders. On my shopping trip I also looked for a special trim that I could use to break up the center panel.
I pinned it across and then used a zig zag seam to attach. Something this small can make a big impact. Up to this point, I really haven't done much piecing either. So this top came together really quickly. I think I had it ready to go on the longarm frame in three days from initial cutting.
Here it is loaded up on my frame ready to quilt. Since there are multiple borders, I decided to do different quilting patterns on each. Now I did work vertically down the quilt and once I got all of the borders done across, I took the whole quilt off the frame and rotated it. Then loaded it back on the frame and quilted the two side borders. That way I didn't have to chunk any borders or figure any math as I was advancing the quilt in my frame.
Look how pretty all of those feathers are on the back. That center oval is where the embroidery was and I had plans for it. I put the quilt label inside.
Here is a view of the label without my heartfelt quote. Some things are between a mom and a daughter..... You can see that I added another cute bee and I did hand sew with turned edge applique.
I had extra fabric and trim so I made a small throw pillow that she can decorate with.
The best part of making a quilt as a gift is seeing it in the space it will be used. I think it matches my mom's bed perfectly. She loved it and I even got to talk to her the day after she slept under it for the first time. That is a memory that will stay with me. Maybe you have been inspired to sew a simple quilt using a focus fabric you love. I filmed a video you can watch below showing more of my process and even the quilting in case you want to see how that came together on the longarm. I hope you have enjoyed this post, share what you learn and are generous with what you create. Someone will appreciate your hard work.
Lagniappe Peddler believes that the process of working with our hands can be one of the best forms of healing the hurts in our lives and welcomes all who visit this safe little corner of the world.
What is a Lagniappe Peddler?
ˌlanˈyap,ˈlanˌyap - something given as a bonus or extra gift
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